Benchmark share index ended flat after early gains yesterday as cautious investors sold shares on fears of a further dip after the bourse plunged over 5 percent in the previous session.
The All Share Price index, which rose 2.9 percent in the early trade, closed 6.75 points or 0.1 percent weaker at 6,622.08.
On Wednesday it hit a one-month low on panic selling due to a long overdue correction in Asia's best performing and most expensive market this year, before recovering to the close because of buying by state investment funds.
It still remains Asia's best performer in 2010 with a 95.6 percent gain as the island's economy rebuilds following the end of the civil war in May 2009. It has shed 8.1 percent since hitting an all-time high of 7,207.75 on Oct 4.
Analysts said investors are still worried of a further plunge, so they expect selling pressure to continue alongside sales to settle margin calls.
The 14-day relative strength index (RSI) of the CSE is at 54.1, between the neutral limits of 30 and 70, Thomson Reuters data showed.
The index was at 92.4 on Oct. 1 and had been in the overbought zone from Aug. 18.
Sri Lanka's share index is trading at the highest forward price-to-earnings ratio in Asia and global emerging markets at 21.2 times, compared with 13.4 for all of Asia and 12.5 for global emerging markets, Thomson Reuters data showed.
Market turnover was 2.8 billion rupees ($25.3 million), nearly five times the 2009 average. Foreign investors bought a net 6.5 million rupees in shares, but they have overall sold 19.4 billion rupees' worth this year.
The rupee edged up to 111.82/85 per dollar from Wednesday's 111.84/85, on thin dollar sales by exporters in the absence of importer demand, dealers said. (Reuters)